Support to Civil Society Organizations

An important perspective on media freedom and the role of the media in democratic politics takes the interests of citizens as a starting point. The norm of freedom of the press not only protects the press, but the public communication process as a whole, which includes voices from the civil society as partners in public communications. 

For the sustainability of democratic life it is important that different ideas across all parts of society are heard. Diversity and activities of civil society players are a sign of self-organization capacities and pluralism within society. At the level of society as a whole, civil society players take on important functions in initiating discussion processes about questioning government policies and enhancing the capacities within society for negotiation processes.

Civil society in Ukraine has assumed a more comprehensive role over the recent years to the extent that the problem solving capacities of traditional players have diminished considerably.A participatory and social democracy can be considered a prerequisite for peace. In this context civil society groups have an important function: they mobilize the commitment of social groups in the peace process.

Civil society organizations play an important role with respect to societal change and democratic development in a sustainable manner. They increase the possibilities for participation of all parts of citizenship, especially those not heard in elite communications. The promotion of civil society may thus contribute to supporting democratization processes, fostering human rights and solving conflicts. Hence, strengthening the media competence of civil society actors – which include members of CSOs and protest movements as well as political activists – to be respected in the media and to communicate in the public sphere is an important strand of IRMI’s activities.
 



Recent activities:

  • For many years IRMI is the partner of the British Council in delivering and facilitation of the ‘Active Citizens’ program in Ukraine. The Program aims to strengthen capacities of the young leaders – from CSOs, media, volunteer groups – to develop and implement social action projects in their communities. The most recent trainings within the program were conducted by IRMI in Kharkiv, Zhytomir and Chernivtsy in 2015.
  • IRMI has delivered number of trainings for CSOs in different regions of Ukraine to strengthen their capacities in Public Communications and media relations in order to enhance the dialogue with target audiences and participate in policy dialogue.
     


Main areas of expertise for CSOs:

  • Organisation’s mission, goals and tasks, as a precondition of its development.
  • Key factors of effective management.
  • How to organize the work of a team.
  • Who we are and who do we work for? How do we build trustworthy relations with clients and CSOs?
  • Media cooperation and social adds.
  • Highly effective and low budget PR-campaigns for CSOs
  • Using sociological tools when working with CSOs. 

Other links of IRMI

Journalism and Media

Free and independent mass media are essential for the building and development of an open and democratic society. A free flow of information delivered by the printed media, radio and television and Internet is an absolute necessity in a political system where every citizen must have the possibility to form his or her own opinion. Independent media are critical to development, democracy and dialogue. Media give people a voice, acting as a balance and watchdog to potential misconduct, corruption or crime. But the impact of the media is not limited to the area of politics. Economic development is benefitting from more openness and access to economic information so that citizens have better information about what is happening in their communities and in commercial and financial markets, allowing them to make better-informed choices.

In most countries everyone can call himself ‘journalist’. Everyone can establish a publishing company and bring another newspaper or magazine on the stand. Journalism, however, is a profession as well as a pillar in democratic public spheres. Based on this principle IRMI does not recommend authorities to limit the profession of a journalist only to those people that graduated from one of the official educational institutes. Most of all it is the responsibility of the publishers and/or the editors-in-chief to protect the quality of the profession. They can do that by hiring only very well educated, high qualified people for the job. IRMI was established to contribute in a system of professional education based on expertise in this field in all parts of Ukraine and in other countries in Central- and Eastern Europe. Hence, IRMI has contributed and is contributing to professional role understandings, work practices and ethical orientations of journalists. In the last decade this expertise has been transferred to Ukrainian partners in the framework of special ‘train the trainers’ programs.
 

The recent activities of IRMI in the field of media and journalism include the following:

  • 2014-2015 – Conflict Sensitive Reporting. The project of trainings and production workshops for regional media with a special focus on reporting IDP issues. In partnership with Thomson Foundation (UK) and under the support of the UK Conflict Pool
  • Media production sessions for Hromadske TV. Number of documentaries on IDP situation in Ukraine were prepared as the result of a special training and production sessions in Kharkiv, Odessa and Lviv.
  • 2015 – “Students Newsroom”


Some of the previously implemented projects:

  • «Ethics Code for Journalists as a Contract with Public», in Kharkiv and Lviv for journalists of print and on-line media.
  • “Information Wars and International Public Opinion. Professional Responsibility of Journalists”. The round table was held in Kyiv with the participation of Gie Meeuwis.
  • Round tables and workshops supporting “destatization” of mass media in Ukraine.

Methodological and Publishing Endeavours

  • A comparative legal study “Freedom of Information”, prepared by Article 19 was translated and edited
     


Main trainings for media professionals:

  • Professional journalism standards
  • Who do we trust: working with sources
  • Investigative reporting
  • Interview as a genre: key instruments
  • Elections coverage. Professional and legal norms. 
  • Civic reporting. Basic principles and management.
  • A Code of Conduct. Professional and ethical standards as an agreement between media organisations and society. Ethics and new media.
  • Journalism and crises. Reporting conflicts.
  • Journalism and universal media platforms.
  • Visualisation and media. Photo journalism. 

Other links of IRMI

Intercultural Communications

Ukraine became motherland for different ethnic groups and peoples and as no other country Ukraine is capable of giving value to mutual understanding. It is impossible to reach without a dialogue. The striving for becoming part of European community adds new vectors. How do we live in global world and common information environment, how do we talk to neighbours that brought in a new culture, how to enrich our own culture drawing upon new experience? Intercultural dialogue programmes show how to prevent conflicts and resolve them, expanding the perception of the world. 

IRMI is able to offer, within its suite of activities, advanced support to organisations in support of intercultural dialogue, cross cultural communications, engagement with diversity and active citizenship. This support can be offered through the highly experienced inter cultural experts who work in support of our goals. Between them, they have a wealth of experience, including programme design, delivery and development, organisational support, facilitation, intercultural auditing, training and research.

Programmes participants not only learn about public communications, but also develop leadership skills and build on capacity to deal with civil conflicts and foster their resolution; they learn to develop partnerships. Moreover, they are learning how to pass on that knowledge to others.
 



Some recent activities:

  • Together with the Yevgen Kushnaryov Foundation for Democracy Initiatives Support IRMI carried out an international round-table on the issues of intercultural dialogue. The event was supported by the Ministry of the Presidential Commission on Culture and Spirituality with the participation and supportof UNESCO expert. The recommendations that were developed by the participants of the round-table were disseminated among the media, decision-making bodies and organizations and directed to the corresponding Committee of the Supreme Council of Ukraine.
  • «The Dialogue of Cultures and Modern Ukrainian Society» involving representatives of national minority groups of Ukraine as participants. The event was held under support of the Committee of Culture and Spirituality of Ukraine and with participation of UNESCO.
  • International conference “Democratic Society. Tolerance and Social Responsibility” with the participation of IRMI experts David van der Houwen (Netherlands), Raul Ramirez (US †) and Gie Meeuwis (Belgium).
  • IRMI experts facilitated the ‘Intercultural Navigators’ international program of the British Council. The Program aimed to train young active people from all the regions of Ukraine intercultural facilitators, support interregional projects.

Other links of IRMI

Vpered: The Newspaper is our Front and our Contribution to Victory

It is not only food, electricity and medicine that the people living through difficult war conditions are experiencing shortage of. Information is also in short supply. Svitlana Ovcharenko, Editor- in-Chief of the Vpered Bakhmut-based newspaper, did the impossible to get Bakhmut residents to start receiving the newspaper again. Here is an interview with Svitlana as part of the project to support the sustainability of Ukrainian media.

– Bakhmut. What information about the city are the Ukrainians missing?
– Now Bakhmut is the centrepiece of almost all news, TV stories, front pages not only of Ukrainian, but also of world magazines. It has become a place of pilgrimage for journalists from all over the world, and a lot has been said about its life from TV screens, radio stations and various level newspapers. The information has been coming from various sources: from Ukraine’s President to a random elderly lady from Bakhmut. Therefore, I believe there is enough information for society to realize that our heroic city, at the cost of many lives, is now fighting not only for Ukraine, but for the whole of Europe.

– What do your readers need most these days?
– It’s just the opposite here. The world knows almost everything about Bakhmut, whereas Bakhmutians are in a desperate need of information. That’s where we are supposed to step in.

When heavy fighting began near the city, there was neither electricity, nor mobile communications/Internet signal, when people who remained in Bakhmut found themselves in a complete information vacuum, the only source of information for them could only be a newspaper. Only the newspaper could lay out important and reliable information about the situation countrywide and locally, and most importantly, about the possibility of evacuation and receiving free shelter, medical support and humanitarian assistance.

On November 4, the first Vpered issue, after a long eight months of forced interruption, was delivered to Bakhmut with the help of volunteers and local authorities and distributed to those who are remaining in the epicentre of the fighting, our exhausted Bakhmutians who are staying in basements and have no idea what is happening around them. You can’t imagine how hectic it is there now.

The Union of journalists of Ukraine and their Japanese partners helped us print the first issue of the newspaper. By the end of last year, four more issues were published and two more were published in January. This is largely due to the project ‘Improving the Sustainability of Ukrainian Media’ that the Institute of Regional Media and Information together is implementing together with the Swiss-based organization Media for Peace and Human Dignity.

When volunteers tell us how people cry when they pick up a newspaper in Bakhmut under merciless shelling, it is clear to us – that is our front and our contribution to the victory. Only thanks to Vpered did Bakhmut residents learn that they were not abandoned or forgotten, that the whole world is now standing with them, that the President mentions Bakhmut in almost each of his addresses …

– How is the editorial office of your publication working now?
– We have been facing major economic and organizational challenges. The team was scattered all over Ukraine. But we managed to get out of this spin and learn how to work in war conditions. The team will eventually be in place. We get information, write stories, do the lay out, and printing – all remotely. In conditions of constant blackouts one often has to work nights. Especially when it is about the layout. The layout designer and I are based in different cities. When the power is on in my city, it is off in his and vice versa. Often during the day there is a couple of matching hours a couple of times for us. We are constantly in touch, set alarms for both two in the morning and four in the morning to do our work, because we know that our readers that are now in need for unbiased accurate information more than ever are waiting for their copy of the newspaper. We must send the newspaper to the printing house on time, so as not to break the chain by which it is delivered to Bakhmut. The chain was extremely difficult to build. But that’s another story.

– What kind of support for your project do you expect in the first place?
– The funds, of course, are very important. It is no secret that a newspaper can only make itself sustainable by good sales and solid advertising. Before the war, we were firmly on our feet, had a robust circulation and never received any subsidies. We are now distributing the newspaper in Bakhmut and it’s free for the readers, of course. So, what kind of advertising could we be talking about?

The project for us is primarily an opportunity to get out of our comfort zone, learn, by communicating with colleagues and mentors of the project, on new approaches in modern journalism and on the tools that will enhance our multimedia component, expand the audience and newspaper’s credibility as a reliable source of information. At this stage, for example, we are rebuilding our website and setting up our page on social media. Before the war, our newsroom published two newspapers: the 24-page Vpered and the 16-page Pohliad. It was quite an intense job to do for four journalists, and there was simply not enough time for the web site and social media. Now we still want, so to speak, to catch up on things. We have high hopes for the project in this regard.

The Novyi Den: Kherson Hurts

We will be telling you about publications that have joined the media support project that is being implemented by IRMI in partnership with a Swiss non-profit organization Fondation Hirondelle, funded by Swiss Solidarity. How do our colleagues work under severe military conditions? Is it possible to save the editorial office, resume work, and ensure the journalists’ safety?

We are offering an interview with Anatoly Zhupyna, who has been Editor– in-Chief of The Novy Den independent newspaper of Kherson Oblast since February 1996. At the time of Russia’s full-scale offensive on Ukraine, he was in Kherson, lived under occupation for a month, saving, where possible, the documentation and newsroom’s property. In late March, after reports that rashists had come to get the Editor, I had to leave urgently, risking my life.

– In September, there was information that the publication is resuming its work in a new format. Did you manage to do this?

– The transition to the new format began a little earlier, back in early May. Having left occupied Kherson for Lviv and adapted a little, we immediately began to think about how to work further. We received major support from Lviv Media Solidarity Center under the auspices of the National Journalists’ Union of Ukraine: we were suggested a direction, also, where, and how to look for funds, and learned how to write project papers. Let alone moral support! So, we contacted the employees of our editorial office, who were scattered all over Ukraine, and those who remained in occupation. It was clear to all of us that people needed reliable information. To begin with, we decided to restart our electronic publication. We created a Facebook page and a Telegram channel. The updated NewDay ua logo was supplemented with the slogan: “What is your pain? Kherson is my pain.” Regional news has become a priority for us. But while the Kherson Oblast was in occupation, for obvious reasons, going print was out of the question.

When Kherson was liberated on November 11, we began considering the newspapers’ re-establishment. On November 17, supported by the National Journalists’ Union of Ukraine and its international partners, the first special issue was released. The main topics the issue covered were the de – occupation of Kherson, President Zelensky’s arrival, humanitarian aid, the re-opening of post offices, banks, local mobile networks resuming coverage, and so on. The newspaper’s content was upbeat and optimistic. It was clear to everyone, though, – the rashists would not leave us alone, they would be taking revenge. And so it turned out.

Between The Novy Den first and second special issues, much has changed in the liberated Right-Bank Kherson area: the enemy from the Left Bank was shelling the cities and villages mercilessly, hitting residential buildings, infrastructure facilities, hospitals, schools, humanitarian aid delivery points… Because of this, many people who had survived the occupation left the city. Fortunately, due conditions had been established to make this a reality.

Bringing the publication back to life into the current format – newspaper, website, Facebook page, and a Telegram channel – was possible due to the financial support of Ukraine’s National Union of Journalists and its international partners. We would like to thank the International Institute of Regional Media and information (IRMI) for supporting the activities of our team.

The third issue is now getting into print. I look forward to the day when we can run the word “Victory” in a large font on our title page!

– Is it possible to receive feedback from your audience?

– Of course, we are inspired by our readers who constantly give feedback: in writing, by phone, or by leaving their comments under the stories. My mobile number is in the newspaper for a reason – so that people could talk about their problems, and we could help them. The requests and queries were not long in coming. The telephone calls would come from the former Velykoaleksandrivsky (now Berislavsky) Raion, people asking for help to go to Ukraine’s Western Oblasts, to safer areas. The Kherson Oblast reported on possible collaboration of the former hromada head with the occupiers. People are mostly concerned about everyday problems, humanitarian aid, medical and pension provision, etc.

– How do you get information for your stories?

– The journalists that remained in the occupied area reported on the situation on the ground. Partly in the absence of a stable connection and with a risk to life. In order to send out information, they had to travel a considerable distance in search of stable signal. At the same time, the issue of conspiracy remained important both for the journalists and for their informants, because neglecting it costs lives.
After the liberation of the right-bank Kherson Oblast, it became easier to receive information from there. Journalists are freer in their movements, although under explosions, when they need to work on a story.

We also maintain close ties with the Kherson communities formed in Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Vinnytsia, etc. We are getting interesting bits of information on how IDPs are coping, the assistance they provide to the Armed Forces of Ukraine and residents of the de-occupied areas of the Kherson Oblast.

– What kind of content do you find to be the most relevant today for Kherson and beyond?

– Today the Kherson Oblast is undergoing particularly difficult times. It so happened that the Right Bank of the Oblast has been liberated, constantly suffering from crushing enemy attacks, though. The Left Bank is still under rashists unbearable yoke. Different life circumstances are also dictating the different topics that people are interested in. On the liberated land one needs information about humanitarian aid, evacuation, state aid and volunteers, healthcare, pensions, and building materials.

While on the Left Bank, people have completely different pain: pressure from the invaders, deportation, children being removed under the guise of rehabilitation, civilians being abducted and murdered, partisan movement, forced business acquisition, and the prospects of liberation. Our main task is to provide reliable information to Dnieper’s both banks.

We also know that our audience is scattered far beyond the borders of the Kherson Oblast and Ukraine. These are citizens of Ukraine who fled the war and compassionate foreigners. They need to receive information from the occupied and liberated South too.

– What tasks are awaiting the editorial staff soon? What kind of support are you expecting the Project to grant you? What are the most important things?

– Our daily current affairs updates are available on our website (www.newdayua.net), on our Facebook page and Telegram channel. The special print issues contain information that would not lose its relevance over a longer period: interviews, analytics, useful contacts and tips, etc. The geography of the publication matters to us, so that content is not only Kherson-centered. We keep in mind the occupied Left Bank too. People, when they have been liberated, will see that all this time their issues were covered, they were never forgotten.

The Kherson office used to have all the necessary materials and equipment and a large team of professionals. In a new place and under new circumstances, I had to start from scratch. So, it was only for the financial and technical support of committed colleagues, partners, and donors that made it possible for us to stay afloat and re-establish ourselves.

This project makes it possible to purchase much-needed equipment for work, meeting the basic needs of the editorial staff for consumables, also, enabling us to engage with more journalists, giving them better fees, and expand the geography of business trips.

To us the most important thing is the re-establishment of a stable and regular Novy Den print version. Unfortunately, the full-fledged work of the editorial office is impossible without donor support, as subscriptions and advertising do not suffice. However, the audience’s need for the printed word is huge. In the Kherson Oblast, as you know, there are electricity problems, internet, and mobile signal issues, and therefore access to information is hampered. People rejoice at receiving their beloved newspaper – as they would at a breath of fresh air. The newspaper is a symbol of freedom and indestructibility. Once a reader telephoned and said that when they were holding The Novy Den first special issue, the whole family was crying. The last time newspapers were published here was before the full-scale war…

IRMI offers media professionals support through participation in an international project

“Institute of Regional Meida and Information” (Kharkiv, Ukraine) in partnership with Fondation Hirondelle (Switzerland) launches a project to support Ukrainian media. It is the next phase of our April to October 2022 assistance program.

The project envisages training on how to work under martial law, which requires journalists to have special skills in ensuring the public interest with the requirements of limited access to information. Trainings on professional conduct and tools for investigating war crimes, as well as on mobile journalism are planned. We offer legal advice, mentoring and ad-hoc support. 

Trainers, mentors and consultants are international and Ukrainian media experts with pertinent experience. 

Project participants will be awarded grants for the development of their media.

14 Ukrainian media outlets that will receive comprehensive professional assistance will be selected to participate on a competitive basis. The priority is given to regional media outlets in the south and east of Ukraine, which are ready to ensure comprehensive work and do not have other significant institutional support in grants.

To participate in the project, media representatives need to send a confirmation email by November 20. We will inform selected media.

Feel free to follow us on Facebook: there we plan to cover the progress of the project, Inform journalists about new opportunities to support their media in these difficult times.

Moderate Approaches to a Successful Career

What should Career Centers be offering in order to make the employment of young professionals -graduates of vocational education institutions- more effective? The All-Ukrainian conference on career counseling for all those involved in the vocational education was held in Kamianets-Podilskyi. Oleksii Soldatenko, IRMI expert, was invited to moderate the discussion taking on the World Cafe approach.

The interactive part, during which the participants get to develop scenarios and approaches, practical techniques, is probably the gem of any event. Suggesting and discussing possible changes to the system that is standard and not so flexible is always cool, it’s inspiring. Especially if the trainer only ‘leads’ to the idea, giving the participant an opportunity to go all the way to the best solution himself/herself.

Oleksiy Soldatenko, IRMI expert:

– I moderated the discussion on how educational institutions can cooperate with employers. The latter are very interested in getting onboard the staff that are young, professional, and motivated. Therefore, as the participants of the discussion rightly believe, employers should actively contribute to the development of Career Centers, offer their opportunities to prepare future graduates for professional life. As a moderator, I am particularly inspired by the fact that our discussion was attended by active, positive, caring people who already have their own position and vision. They are looking for real opportunities and ways to solve it at a very advanced level. It will be good if the Ministry of Education takes advantage of these proposals.

The conference was part of the EU program “EU4Skills: Best Skills for Modern Ukraine”.

New Leaders – New Approaches

The civic leader’s school, which took place in Kharkiv, included a public communication training led by IRMI experts.

It would be fair to refer to the workshop conducted by Aleksey Soldatenko as the ” training on refutation “. No, PR is not about producing fakes, selfies and ribbon-cutting, but about the ability to see public interest and organize fully-fledged activities. No, communication is not about a monologue of a politician, but about a dialogue, a desire to hear a different opinion and about the ability to hold a debate. No, effective communication and communication noise are different things. No, nobody owes you anything, you want support – make your idea interesting. This is what they learned from the training, getting into simulated situations.

Everything is like in real life. Want some support – go ahead, present the idea and get the other person interested in the short 5 minutes. It seems simple, but the time is over, and yet another potential meeting has not been scheduled for you. The time runs out even faster in the real life. How to behave? A fun game of conveying information when you get an unexpected finale makes you wonder how to control it and how to work with the team.

The discussions that followed had the purpose to convince the participants that new faces were not a goal in itself. Society has a serious demand for new governance patterns, for a dialogue and for information access. And if you want to be active in politics and chose to work in the public sector as your long-term career, public methods of management must be mastered.

High praise from participants gives hope that they have accepted the idea.

“Promoting Government Accountability in Eastern Ukraine” is implemented by Kharkiv-based regional non-state organization – the Association of Private Employers – supported by National Endowment for Democracy.

Works of Young Ukrainian Amateur Photographers at the National Geographic Exhibition

The world-renowned organization presented the works of young amateur photographers made in NatGeo photo camps, held around the world, at the Kennedy Center (Washington, USA). Among the exhibits are four photographs taken in Kharkiv (Ukraine) during a photo camp organised together with the Institute for Regional Media and Information. The authors of the selected photos are Olena Bilous, Rodion Uzbek, Anastasiia Turpetko and Anton Aleksakha.

In Kharkiv, since the beginning of the occupation of the Crimea and the war in Donbass, the city has become a pivotal gate for IDPs to the peaceful territory,  around 20 participants aged between 17 and 30, who moved to different cities of Ukraine from the Crimea and Donbass, worked for a week together with experienced professionals in places where people who fled the war were accommodated. Camera lenses watched adults and children overcome difficulties and problems to let the community see the terrible consequences of social and military conflicts that suddenly ruin plans and hopes, retelling the stories of those who found the strength to start everything from scratch.

When the joint work was over, the jury selected the best works for the touring exhibition, which travelled to Kiev, Odessa, Kharkov, Zaporizhzhia, Dnipro, Slavyansk, Siverodonetsk and Lviv. The exhibition became a vivid peace protection appeal, seen by thousands of Ukrainians.

There were works by Olena Bilous.

“NatGeo photo camp was a twist in my life,” she says. – It added to my confidence and expanded my opportunities. I moved to the capital and began my life “from a blank sheet.” I am now doing photography for a living. I keep photofacts for history, draw people’s attention to pressing issues, working with CSOs. Photo is a powerful tool. And I very much hope that my work, presented at an exhibition in Washington, will help people sense Ukraine, learn more about us and the war in Donbass. I am infinitely grateful for the opportunity to tell the world what is happening on my land.”

The National Geographic photo camp took place in Kharkiv from 5th July to 10th July 2015.The photo exhibition and photo gallery were made possible thanks to the support of USAID’s Ukraine Confidence Building Initiative and due to the efforts of project partners: the Institute of Regional Media and Information (Kharkiv) and the Vision Workshops (USA).

To Communicate Effectively

was something that activists from civil society organisations of Dnipro, Kharkiv, Zaporizhzhia and the cities of these oblasts were trying to learn. The training course on mastering the tools for effective communication and public relations gathered more than 50 participants. The training was held within the project “Support of the territorial communities of Ukraine due to the increase in the number of internally displaced persons” and is one of the German Government “Initiatives of the Infrastructure Programme for Ukraine” implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft f?r Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. The initiatives are aimed at helping the areas with the highest number of internally displaced persons, namely: Kharkiv, Dnipropetrovsk and Zaporizhzhia Oblasts.

The agenda of two two-day workshops – led by IRMI experts – integrated the basic concepts of PR with the practical skills: stage-planning, implementation, tools, analysis and output assessment.

The participants noted it was important to discuss the principles and approaches public relations are based on. How PR is different from other communicative practices like marketing, advertising and propaganda, the aims that are behind each practice and the tools being applied.

The case studies, role plays and practical assignments helped the participants refine their communication skills.  As, for instance, the “elevator pitch” game, where the task is to present your idea in a few minutes while the elevator is moving and to be able to hook up the person you are presenting to. How do you create target audience-oriented messages? How do you ask questions and answer them? How do you hold a press conference and how do you participate in one? How do you give an interview? How do you build a communication strategy, based on research and target audience segmentation? How do you design an effective low-budget campaigns? A relevant issue for CSOs with a tight budget. Addressing those questions via assignments completion and, what is even more important, discussing them together, sent the participants off to reassessment of their own work.  

I liked the workshop for its minimum theory and maximum relevant practice. Interactive assignments stimulated logical thinking and imagination. It was interesting to work in groups. I learned lots of new useful things! – said Olga Volynska, Head of media for Sich Human Rights Group.